Thankfully, Andrew Bailey is no longer our closer. He is now some sort of setup man whose prominence in the bullpen has yet to be determined. We completed a six-player trade with the Pirates in order to land Joel Hanrahan. They’re getting Mark Melancon and three prospects (Stolmy Pimentel, Ivan De Jesus, and Jerry Sands), and in addition to Hanrahan we’re getting Brock Holt, an infielder. Hanrahan is a righty whose ERA last season was 2.72; his WHIP was 1.27, and he recorded sixty-seven strikeouts and a total of thirty-six saves with four blown. His lifetime strikeout rate per nine innings is about ten, and he’s been an All-Star more than once. I am absolutely not happy about his walks, which is obviously a significant downside for a closer of all pitchers. He’s also never pitched in Fenway ever, and he’s only been to Boston once. So we’ve got a National League closer who walks and has never pitched in Boston. Still, though, he’s obviously a significant improvement over the alternative. Technically that doesn’t say much, but I have to believe that his stuff will shine through.
In other news, the Pats closed out the season with back-to-back wins over the Jaguars, 23-16, and Dolphins, twenty-eight-zip. It’s playoff time! We’ve got a first-round bye, which should provide some extra rest.